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Paul Jensen

FLOWERS OF SHANGHAI (1998) 5 stars

Hou Hsiao-hsien's masterpiece. Mesmerizing, entrancing and totally unforgettable. Taiwanese cinema reached a zenith in the 90s and HHH remains at the forefront. Each shot lasts approximately ten minutes a piece. Unforgettable and as captivating as the colors of an emerald. You stare into it and its shape is always shifting, elusive and filled with complexity. It centers on high-class prostitutes in a brothel. The imagery is hypnotic and the story is so layered and intimate that the film casts a spell on the viewer. It's part of the reason why Taiwanese cinema of the 90's became so revolutionary.


Genre: Foreign
Director: Hou Hsiao-hsien